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TO   THE   LIGHTHOUSE

A shadow was on the page; she looked up. It
was Augustus Carmichael shuffling past, pre-
cisely now, at the very moment when it was painful
to be reminded of the inadequacy of human
relationships, that the most perfect was flawed,
and could not bear the examination which, loving
her husband, with her instinct for truth, she
turned upon it; when it was painful to feel herself
convicted of unworthiness, and impeded in her
proper function by these lies, these exaggerations,
—it was at this moment when she was fretted
thus ignobly in the wake of her exaltation, that
Mr. Carmichael shuffled past, in his yellow
slippers, and some demon in her made it necessary
for her to call out, as he passed,

" Going indoors, Mr. Carmichael? "

8

He said nothing. He took opium. The
children said he had stained his beard yellow
with it. Perhaps. What was obvious to her
was that the- poor man was unhappy, came to
them every yea^ as an escape; and yet every year,
she felt the sar^e thing; he did not trust her.
She said, " I am \going to the town. Shall I get
you stamps, papen, tobacco? " and she felt him
wince. He did nofe, trust her. It was his wife's
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